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rose leaf

March 10, 2011

About two weeks ago I realized that a friend’s birthday was coming up sooner than I thought. I had been thinking of making her a small lace shawl, ideally a triangle that would just go around the shoulders.

There was just one catch. The friend in question is not only allergic to wool and other animal fibers, but also cotton. This ruled out pretty much everything in my stash and I was forced to go yarn shopping. With a mere ten days until her birthday party, I found a 350 yard skein of 100% silk dk (and threw in a skein of silk/linen laceweight just in case my first plan didn’t work).

And then I waited. Actually, that’s not entirely true. I was a bit obsessed with some other lace knitting (a post about that project is coming up soon), and so I continued on that until I realized I had hit a wall in the pattern and also that I had about six days left before the party.

So I got to knitting, starting with this pattern, which was a huge disappointment. The cast on started with 2-3 stitches followed by two rows of increases, stretching the original stitches considerably and in my case, unevenly. After noticing this the first time, I started over, but came up with the same results. I don’t see the point in knitting with a “luxury” yarn if your lazy casting on is going to make the beginning really ugly. This kind of soured me on the whole pattern, and so I reached for the Evelyn A. Clark book Knitting Lace Triangles (possibly the most useful knitting book I’ve ever purchased and one I highly recommend for knitters who want to get into lace).

I went with a straight up leaf pattern, planning on adding some others somewhere in the middle, but the more I knit the more I thought leaves were the best idea. I knit all through Tuesday and Wednesday (Wednesday night’s knitting was done with the birthday girl sitting right next to me, in fact), Thursday and Friday, when I bound off and blocked the shawl immediately. I didn’t have any time to waste, after all.

Obviously, the shawl was ready for Sunday night’s party, and was received extremely well. It’s always nice to knit for people who fully appreciate handmade things.

“This must have taken you forever!” she exclaimed.

I couldn’t lie to a friend. “Four days.” I replied.

Ain’t I a stinker?

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